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Businesses can’t function without offices, and offices can’t function without an office manager to oversee everything and keep things ticking over. It’s an exciting, dynamic role where two days never look quite the same, which makes it an attractive option for a wide range of people looking to get a foothold in the working world.

Throughout this guide, we’ll be explaining how to create the perfect office manager resume. If you’re interested in applying to be an office manager at some point in the near future, the tips and pieces of advice below will help you to elevate your resume from “good” to “great”, which can make all the difference when it comes time for the recruiter to hire somebody for the role. 

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How to Write an Eye-Catching Office Manager Resume

How to Format It

Due to the dynamic, wide-ranging nature of the job, experience is vitally important when it comes to crafting a great office manager resume. That’s why we recommend the chronological format for your own application. By prioritizing your past experience and making it clear from the very first glance that you’ve already proven yourself in the workplace, you’ll be giving a recruiter a great reason to look at your resume in a bit more depth.

Another advantage of the chronological format is that it makes it easy for anybody reading your application to see the way your career has been progressing over the years. This will make it clear that you’ve been able to develop your skillset during your work history, helping to reinforce the idea that you’re experienced with several different rungs on the career ladder.

If you don’t have much experience, the reverse chronological format might be the ticket for you, as it’ll highlight the experience you do have without making it look like there’s anything major lacking. We’ll be providing more tips on how to write a killer resume without much or any experience later on in this guide.

What Recruiters Will Look For

Office managers need a wide range of traits in order to be effective in their work. As well as being competent in their own work, they need to be able to manage people effectively, meaning leadership qualities are of vital importance. But that’s not all recruiters will be looking for.

It’s hard to decide how well-suited somebody will be for a management position just by reading their resume, so recruiters will be examining your application in depth in order to ascertain whether or not you might be a good fit. Here are some of the things they’ll be looking out for as they go through your resume and ultimately decide on how strong a candidate you are for the position.

1. Excellent Organizational Skills

A messy, poorly run office is the exact opposite of how a solid business should look. If you’re not able to keep things tidy, up to date, and in their right place at all times, you might be ruling yourself out of the role before your application even got properly started.

Office managers must possess top-notch organizational skills to be effective, and to ensure the office as a whole is working to maximum capacity. Organizational ability is therefore one of the single most important traits recruiters will be looking out for as they go through the stack of resumes in front of them.

2. Leadership Qualities

There are some things you can learn, and some things that are just innate. Although anybody can brush up on their leadership skills and learn to be more assertive in the way they communicate, natural leadership is something that’s difficult to coach, and it’s a very attractive quality for a potential office manager candidate to possess.

Being a natural leader bodes well for the future of the office you’ll be managing, but it also helps to ease doubts in the recruiter’s mind about whether or not you’ll be able to adapt to the challenges of the job on a daily basis. However, even if you’re not a leader by nature, as long as you’re able to effectively organize and manage groups of people you’ll catch the recruiter’s eye all the same.

3. Technical Skills

Apart from being able to oversee and direct the members of your office, it’s important that you’ll be able to actually handle the technical demands of the rest of your job. The person hiring for the position will, therefore, be on the lookout for people with adequate technical skills. 

Fortunately, these skills don’t need to be anything over the top. Simply being well-versed in how to use Microsoft Office programs and having a working knowledge of printers, scanners, and copiers will tick this box for the recruiter reading your resume.

Which Hard & Soft Skills to Include and How to Do It Correctly

For office managers, the divide between hard and soft skills is less straightforward than for some other, more technical positions. A lot of your working routine will involve managing and overseeing the office you’re in charge of, which requires skills we usually consider “soft”, such as communication and organization. Here are the best ways to present your hard and soft skills to prove that you understand what the position requires.

Hard Skills

The hard skills used by office managers on a daily basis typically involve technical aptitude with software packages, as well as being able to use the actual machinery present in the office. See below for some of the most important hard skills to include on your resume:

  • Familiarity with the MS Office Suite, such as PowerPoint, Word, Excel, etc
  • Comfort with preparing and presenting information to a large group of people
  • Technical competence with devices like fax machines, printers, scanners, etc

Soft Skills

Unlike a lot of other positions, soft skills are perhaps more important for office managers than the pertinent hard skills.This is because your real value will come from how you can manage the people around you, as opposed to the work you’ll be doing yourself in the office. Here are the soft skills recruiters will be keeping an eye out for:

  • Leadership ability
  • Solid communication skills, particularly with regards to assertive, direction-giving communication
  • The ability to delegate effectively when required
  • Motivational skills, to inspire your colleagues and boost productivity
  • Excellent conflict resolution skills, to sort out the inevitable problems that will arise in the office
  • Strong time management and organizational skills

How to Highlight Your Achievements

When you consider which achievements to include on your office manager’s resume, you need to keep in mind what the recruiter will be looking for. Because it’s a managerial role, you’re going to want to prioritize any achievements made in areas that required you to be in a position of leadership or similar role.

Educational achievements are always impressive, because they indicate that you’ve been excelling for years, not just since you graduated school. Outside of the educational sphere, any achievements you’ve made in areas that required a lot of self-direction or self-motivation will also go down very well, as they’ll show that you can work effectively under your own steam without needing a massive amount of guidance.

When you highlight your achievements on your resume, keep things short and to the point. Your achievements will sell themselves, and being concise will prove to the recruiter that you’re aware of how impressive they are on their own.

Why Mentioning Your Exact Duties in Previous Office Manager Jobs Is Important

Too often, people don’t hone in on precisely what exactly they did in their previous roles when writing an office manager’s resume. It’s a mistake to take a more generalized approach, as that can effectively go in one ear and out the other for the recruiter who has to pore over potentially dozens of different applications. If you’re the fifth time they have to read about how you were vaguely successful as an office manager in the past, you can bet that they won’t remember you all that well.

It might initially sound a bit silly to talk about things you did as part of your daily routine, but it’s exactly what the recruiters are looking for. Don’t be afraid to get very specific. The more granular you can be, the better, since it’ll show that you understand what’s required of an office manager on a day-to-day basis.

Mentioning your duties is important, but it’s also important to mention ideas you had on how to improve the processes in your office. For example, if you were able to put together a plan to revitalize the existing lineup of printers and copiers without needing a massive budget, that’s an excellent point to include since it demonstrates initiative, financial savviness, and the confidence to trust one of your own ideas and follow it through to the end.

How to Write a Resume Objective and Examples of This

A resume objective should be written in a straightforward tone that focuses on your abilities and proves you’ve thoroughly read the job listing in question. Don’t go over the top, and try to stay in the passive voice as much as possible; it might sound a little dry to you when you read over it the first time, but it’s exactly what’s required for an excellent resume objective. Check out these two examples of well-written resume objectives:

  1. Experienced individual with 4 years of experience as an office manager looking to fill that role at ABC Inc, leveraging strong interpersonal communication skills and a history of successful project management with teams both big and small.
  1. Driven, passionate office manager with 6 years of experience interested in bringing problem-solving acumen, commercial awareness, and excellent management skills to the same role at XYZ Corp. 

How to Write a Resume Summary and Examples of This

One way to think of a resume summary is as a way for you to really sell the value you’ll be able to provide your new employers if they hire you. As opposed to the resume objective, a resume summary is your chance to talk about what you’ve been able to accomplish in previous roles, and how you can bring that experience to bear in this new position. Here are some good examples of resume summaries (note the differences in tone and style compared to the resume objective examples above):

  1. Focused individual with 5 years of experience working as an office manager keen on broadening horizons at XYZ Inc by filling that position. In my most recent professional experience I was able to boost office productivity by 40% while working with a slashed budget and avoiding redundancies as much as possible.
  1. Professional office worker with 10 years of experience interested in applying to the role of office manager at ABC LLC. I’ve worked on several management projects in the past, including one task which required interdepartmental collaboration and direct interaction with C-level executives. I’d welcome the chance to bring my problem solving abilities and interpersonal skills to your organization.

How to List Any Additional Details like Certifications, Volunteering Experience, Etc.

In addition to the strictly relevant aspects of your resume, such as your work history and resume objective / summary statements, it’s important that you list your additional details correctly. Don’t be shy about mentioning other experiences you’ve had, particularly if they help confirm your own leadership skills in some way. Here are the best ways to go about mentioning other details on your resume:

1. Volunteering Experiences

Talking about any experience you have in a voluntary capacity is a great idea, since it shows the recruiter that you’re generous with your time, and that you’re not afraid to spend some of your energy on a good cause. Any time you’ve spent volunteering at all is worth mentioning, but pay special attention to any volunteering experiences you have that involved leading or managing in some description, since it’ll translate well to the kind of work you’ll be doing as an office manager. Keep this section of your application concise and to-the-point for maximum impact on the recruiter reading your resume.

2. Online Certifications

These days, there’s no end of online courses you can take in your free time to further your skillset and broaden your knowledge. Even if they’re not specific to being an office manager, it’s a good idea to include them as it shows that you have a self-educating streak, as well as making it clear that you’ll be able to follow through on tasks with minimal input from higher management. Any online qualifications you’ve been able to pick up will be of value, and if they have something to do with the business world, even better.

How to Write a Office Manager Resume When You Have Limited or No Experience

Applying for an office manager job with no experience is likely to be a little challenging. The main reason for this is that since it’s a role with so much responsibility, the person hiring you will likely want to see some kind of proof that you’re able to handle a management position. 

However, if you don’t have much experience in the area, all is not lost. You just need to talk about the experience you do have in the right way to try and offset the lack of directly applicable experience. 

One good way to help yourself out in this regard is to mention any leadership qualities you’ve been able to demonstrate in other arenas. For example, time spent in a managerial role in a completely unrelated field will always go down well.

Similarly, if you’ve worked in an office of some kind, but not as a manager, mention that too, and don’t be afraid to bring up any time you’ve spent creating or working on projects yourself. You don’t need to have worked as an office manager in the past to make it clear to your future employer that you’re a good leader, and expressing familiarity with the way an office works. That might make up for the lack of specific office manager experience.

How to Target Your Resume for a Specific Application

Targeting your resume for the specific job you’re applying to is probably one of the single best ways to ensure you make an impression on the recruiter going through the candidates. The ideal way to target your resume in this regard is to read the job listing itself as closely as possible, and to take notes throughout about what the people hiring for the job might be looking for. By focusing on some keywords and tailoring your resume to comply with them, you’ll be making it obvious that you’re not just sending out a copy-and-pasted resume to a hundred different jobs.

Here are some things to look out for, in order to make your resume as specific as possible:

1. People Skills

You can be the best manager on the planet, but if you’re not able to communicate with the people you’re in charge of - it won’t do anybody any good. If you see a lot of words throughout the job listing that focus on things like communication, delegation and other aspects of managing people as opposed to simply managing teams, make sure you talk in detail about your own interpersonal skills, whenever possible.

2. Business Savviness

As well as taking charge of people and ensuring that the office itself is working well, you’ll be called upon to make strategic business decisions from time to time. This is an often overlooked aspect of being an office manager, which means that if you can target your resume to tick this particular box, you’ll be presenting an attractive package right from the start. 

If you come across a lot of talk about business acumen or commercial knowledge in the application, don’t shy away from making it clear that you know a lot about the business world. This could take the form of discussing former projects you worked on that required commercial insight, or it could involve discussing how much you enjoy furthering your knowledge about the world of business.

How to Make Your Resume Stand Out

The best way to make your office manager resume stand out is to do things a little differently from your competition. For example, you can rest assured that practically every other candidate will be talking about their managerial experience in bland terms, focusing on buzzwords. If you can write a more personal description of how you’ve been able to manage teams and groups of people in the past, you’ll be making an impression on the recruiter right away.

In a similar vein, focus on those experiences that only you can bring to the table. By this, we don’t mean to distract from the directly-applicable work experience you have; rather, it’s a good idea to talk about as many specific personal experiences as possible. These could take the form of volunteering positions or charity work you’ve done in the past, as well as particular projects that only you were able to complete at some point in your work history.

The most important takeaway in terms of making your resume stand out is to keep in mind, at all times, what the other resumes might look like. The recruiter reading your job application will likely be reading dozens of others as well, so if you can focus on what makes you special, that’ll come across really well when they get to your resume in the pile.

How Resumebuild can Help You to Write an Outstanding Office Manager Resume

If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by the amount of information above and you’re wondering how on Earth you’ll be able to put it all together, don’t worry - Resumebuild offers a resume building tool to make creating the dream resume a walk in the park.

In addition to hundreds of modern, professionally designed templates, the tool also makes it super easy to include your own personal touches. Using the resume building tool is about as easy as it gets. All you need to do is pick the perfect template for you, fill in personal details, and then click on the download button. You’ll be ready to print it off at a moment’s notice, and that can finally get your job search going in earnest.

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office manager / administrative assistant

  • Reduced cost in travel expenses by 15% due to negotiated agreements with hotels, rental car companies and travel agencies while keeping the company standards and personnel safety intact, mostly when traveling internationally. 
  • Managed Regional Director’s and sales team agendas, presentations, expenses, travel arrangements, conference calls and meetings with internal and external customers, allowing them to focus on other aspects of business. 
  • Successfully maintain a relationship with external customers and served as primary contact between them and the sales team. 
  • Responsible to create, maintain and track an office and sales materials log, helping to decrease overspending and keeping inventory up to date. 
7

office manager/personal assistant

  • Receive and placed telephone calls
  • Mail, fax, or arrange for delivery of legal correspondence to clients, witnesses, and court officials
  • Scheduled and made appointments
  • Made photocopies of correspondence, documents, and other printed matter
  • Operate office machines, such as photocopiers and scanners, facsimile machines, voice mail systems, and personal computers
  • Answered telephones, direct calls, and took messages
  • Maintained and updated filing, inventory, mailing, and database systems, either manually or using a computer
8

office manager

  • Trained [number] new employees on accounting principles and company procedures.
  • Operate 10-key calculators, typewriters, and copy machines to perform calculations and produce documents.
  • Handle all aspects of employee insurance, benefits, and casualty programs, including monitoring changes in health insurance regulations and creating budgets for benefits and worker’s compensation.
  • Complete, verify, and process forms and documentation for administration of benefits such as pension plans, and unemployment and medical insurance.
9

office manager

  • Pastel Invoicing.
  • Daily staff wages and scheduling.
  • Ensure SABS required documentation is completed.
  • Ordering of materials for manufacturing.
  • Ensure staff have necessary PPD’s daily.
  • Liaise with logistic companies for long distance deliveries.
  • Taking daily orders and cash sales.
10

office manager

  • Manage and maintain executives’ schedules.
  • Provide information about establishment, such as location of departments or offices, employees within the organization, or services provided.
  • Processing Contracts and setting them up into our system with data entry, dates, financial & property details
  • Open, sort, and routed incoming mail and prepared outgoing mail